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Wisconsin Military History in Free Books & Articles

Wisconsin Military History in Free Books & Articles

This Webpage has links to free books and articles on Wisconsin Military History.

Wisconsin Military History General

The Wisconsin National Guard

Colbron, W. C.
Milwaukee: King, Fowle, McGee 1894

A history and overview of the Guard, which had about 2,500 men at the time of writing.

See the Menu at the top of every page for Directories of Free Online Fiction and NonFiction Books, Magazines, and more, on 400 pages like this at Century Past

Army Life in Wisconsin Territory

Wisconsin Historical Collections
Madison: State Historical Society of Wisconsin. 1898

Three historical papers and excerpts from an orderly book were packaged together into a single booklet by the Historical Society. Wisconsin forts.

Part I: “The History of Fort Winnebago”, by Andrew Jackson Turner.
Part II: “Fort Winnebago Orderly Book 1834-36”.
Part III: “Abraham Lincoln in the Black Hawk War”, by Alfred Augustus Jackson
Part IV: “An English Officer’s Description of Wisconsin, in 1837” by Capt. Frederick Marryat, C.B.. Wisconsin forts, battles fought in Wisconsin, Black Hawk War.

“French Fort at Prairie Du Chien a Myth”

Wisconsin Historical Collections Volume X (1888) pp 307- 320

Butterfield, C.W.
Madison: Wisconsin Historical Society

The author argues that several Wisconsin historians have long maintained that during the period of the French regime, the French military had a sizeable fort at Prairie du Chien, although its exact location had not been pinpointed. The author believes that fort never existed, and uses the article to address the weakness of the evidence that had been put forth by its proponents. Wisconsin forts.

Wisconsin Census Enumeration 1895

Names of Ex-Soldiers and Sailors residing in Wisconsin, June 20, 1895

Casson, Henry, Secretary of State, comp.
Madison: Democrat 1896

Data for veterans includes name, rank, company, regiment, and post office address. Home state is also shown for veterans who arrived from outside Wisconsin.

“Early French Forts in Western Wisconsin”

Wisconsin Historical Collections Volume X (1888) pp 321- 372

Draper, Lyman C.
Madison: Wisconsin Historical Society

Please see the article on this web page entitled “French Fort at Prairie Du Chien”. This article is a rebuttal. Wisconsin forts.

“The Military History of Green Bay”


Evans, William L.
Madison: State Historical Society 1900

This is a historical article republished as a booklet. The author states that the earliest we know of a fort at La Baye, which is what the French called Green Bay, was 1721. However, Nicholas Perrot,who became an independent trader at La Baye in 1665, was named commander-in-chief over all regions to the west in 1685. This article describes military activities at Green Bay from the 1720s through about 1850, under French, British and American government. Wisconsin forts, Wisconsin fort at Green Bay.

Wisconsin Frontier Conflict with Indians

“The Winnebago War of 1827”

Collections of the State Historical Society Vol 5 1907 pp 178-204

McKenney, Thomas L. (Col.)
Madison: Wisconsin State Historical Society

The article describes the joint expedition of General Atkinson from Jefferson Barracks below St. Louis and Major Whistler from Ft. Howard on Green Bay to capture those who had committed murders at Prairie du Chien and prevent further attacks. Conflicts in Wisconsin history.

Note that this volume of Wisconsin Historical Collections contains several articles related to the Winnebago War.

Wisconsin in the Black Hawk War

“Causes of the Black Hawk War; Barbarous Treatment of Indian Women and Children”

Wisconsin Historical Collections Vol X 1888 pp 223-226

Madison: State Historical Society of Wisconsin

This is a reproduction of a newspaper article from May, 1833 that reports a rumor that prior to the beginning of the Black Hawk War a son of Black Hawk had been taken prisoner and was given 500 lashes. This incident was allegedly the provocation for Black Hawk going to war. The article also mentions other outrages against Indians that the newspaper editor suggests had goaded them into rebellion. Black Hawk War, Wisconsin wars.

Note that this volume of Wisconsin Historical Collections contains a variety of articles related to the Black Hawk War.

See the resources on this site for: The Black Hawk War of 1832

“The Battle of Peckatonica”

Wisconsin Historical Collections Vol X 1888 pp 178-183

Fitch, Matthew G. (Lieut.)
Madison: State Historical Society of Wisconsin

This is a description of a battle in the Black Hawk War that took place in the mining region of Southwest Wisconsin. Battles in Wisconsin, battlefields in Wisconsin, wars in Wisconsin.

See the resources on this site for: The Black Hawk War of 1832

“Indian Campaign of 1832”

Wisconsin Historical Collections Vol X 1888 pp 150-166

Smith, Henry (Capt.)
Madison: State Historical Society of Wisconsin

This is one of several articles in this volume of Wisconsin Historical Collections that address the Black Hawk War. The author was a company commander during the campaign, and wrote this report in 1833 at the request of the editors of Military and Naval Magazine. Wisconsin wars, battles in Wisconsin.

See the resources on this site for: The Black Hawk War of 1832

Wisconsin in the Civil War

Wisconsin Civil War Regimental Histories Collection

This collection of about 14 books on Wisconsin units in the Civil War is in the Internet Archive. It includes rosters of Wisconsin volunteers, and histories of the 8th Wisconsin, 36th Wisconsin Infantry, 6th Wisconsin, and some other books about Wisconsin participation in the Civil War.

Letters Home to Sarah

The Civil War Letters of Guy C. Taylor, 36th Wisconsin Volunteers

Alders, Kevin and Alderson, Patsy, eds.
University of Wisconsin 2012

A Wisconsin Boy in Dixie

The Selected Letters of James K. Newton

Ambrose, Stephen, ed.
University of Wisconsin 1961

A Bibliography of Wisconsin’s Participation in the War Between the States…

based upon material contained in the Wisconsin Historical Library

Bradley, Isaac Samuel, comp.
Madison: Wisconsin History Commission 1911

Many of the books listed in this bibliography are available online for free. For assistance in finding them, see our blog post Finding Free Books Online.

For histories of the Civil War, see also on this site: Civil War in America

Roster of Wisconsin Volunteers, War of the Rebellion, 1861-1865, Vol 1

Volume 2

Chapman, Chandler P., Adjutant General, comp.
Madison: Democrat 1886

Information for each veteran includes his residence, date he volunteered, and remarks. Remarks generally include campaigns in which he participated, whether wounded, killed or disabled, and date of discharge or mustering out. Names are listed within regiments, so in order to find a veteran it is best to know his military unit.

Wisconsin in the Civil War

Commission on Preparation of History of the Wisconsin Soldiers in the Civil War
Madison: State of Wisconsin 1907

Mainly a list of published histories of Wisconsin regiments. Wisconsin during the Civil War.

Service with the Sixth Wisconsin Volunteers

Dawes, Rufus R.
Marietta, OH: Alderman 1890

According to the editor who reprinted this 1890 book in 1962, ” … the book is a combination of the personal experiences of Rufus R. Dawes and a history of the regiment of which he was a member. In the vast literature of the American Civil War, it has long been recognized as exceptional. Its excellence is the project of three factors: the character and abilities of the author; the historical techniques and materials which he used; and the events in which he and his regiment participated.” Wisconsin during the Civil War.

Regimental Publications & Personal Narratives of the Civil War: A Checklist. Vol. 1, Part 6 – Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin

Dornbusch, Charles Emil
NY: New York Public Library 1961-1972

This is Part 6 of a 7-part work, which covers Civil War histories of 17 participating northern states. Part 6 covers Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. According to the compiler’s Preface, every battery and regiment is listed, and arranged numerically by arm of service – Artillery, Cavalry and Infantry. Any publications that could be associated with a particular battery or regiment are listed under that unit, including regimental histories, personal narratives, reunion proceedings, unit rosters and even sermons preached at soldiers’ funerals. Personal narratives by individuals who served under more than one unit are found under the unit of their first service. Wisconsin during the Civil War.

Many or most of these articles and books are likely available online, free. For assistance in finding these, see our blog post Finding Free Books Online.

For histories of the Civil War, see also on this site: Civil War in America

The Chattanooga Campaign

with especial reference to Wisconsin’s participation therein

Fitch, Michael Hendrick
Madison: Wisconsin History Commission 1911

Chapter headings:
1. The Preliminary Campaign Organization. Organization of the Confederate Army. The advance of the Union Army.
2. The Chickamauga Campaign and Battle. The Confederate line on September 20. The Confederate attack upon the Union right. Wisconsin troops at Chickamauga.
3. The Occupation and Battles of Chattanooga. The Battle of Lookout Mountain. Wisconsin troops in the Battle of Missionary Ridge.

The Battle of Gettysburg

Haskell, Frank Aretas
Madison: Wisconsin History Commission 1908

A fine first-person account of the battle, by a colonel in Wisconsin’s Iron Brigade.

A Narrative of Service with the Third Wisconsin Infantry

Hinkley, Julian Wisner
Madison: Wisconsin History Commission 1912

The author was the Captain of Company E. Chapter headings:
– Enlistment and training – Departure for the Front – Service in Maryland – On the trail of Stonewall Jackson – The Tables Turned – At Cedar Mountain – The Army retreats Northward – Moving toward the Enemy – Battle of South Mountain – Battle of Antietam – In Winter Quarters – Chancellorsville – A Cavalry Expedition – Gettysburg – On Draft Riot Duty – With the Army of the Cumberland – The Third Veteranizes – Reorganizing Lincoln County – Opening of the Atlanta Campaign – Wounded and in Hospital – The Siege of Atlanta – The March to the Sea – In Front of Savannah – In Savannah – Marching Northward – Peace – Homeward

Wisconsin Women in the War Between the States

Hurn, Ethel Alcie
Madison: Wisconsin History Commission 1911

Chapter headings:
1. The Departure of the Regiments 2. Soldiers’ Aid Societies 3. The Wisconsin Soldiers’ Aid Society and Mrs. Henrietta Colt 4. Conditions at Home 5. Letters for the Front 6. Women with the Regiments 7. Hospitals and Nurses 8. Mrs. Cordelia A. P. Harvey
9. Mrs. Harvey’s Interview with Lincoln 10. The Christian Commission 11. The Northwestern Sanitary Fair 12. The Milwaukee Soldiers’ Home and the Soldiers’ Home Fair

Capture and Escape; A Narrative of Army and Prison Life

Kellogg, John Azor
Madison: Wisconsin History Commission 1908

Kellogg was a Colonel in the Sixth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry Regiment during the Civil War.

Wisconsin and the Civil War

Klement, Frank L.
Madison: State Historical Society of Wisconsin 1963

This “synopsis” of just over 100 pages was prepared for the Civil War centennial in Wisconsin. In addition to a concise account of the raising of troops and their deeds on the battlefield, it is a history of events, politics and economic development in Wisconsin during the war.

See our Jane’s Military Books PDF

Wisconsin at Shiloh; Report of the Commission

Magdeburg, F. H., Cpt., comp.
Madison: Wisconsin Shiloh Monument Commission 1909

Describes the activities of the Wisconsin military units that participated in the battle, includes the speeches made at the dedication of the monument, and includes various other information about the battle and the commemoration efforts of other states.

A History of the Civil War Draft in Wisconsin

Schoonover, Lynn Ira
Madison: University of Wisconsin 1915

An M.A. thesis in the history department of University of Wisconsin.

Fire Within: A Civil War Narrative from Wisconsin

Trask, Kerry A.
Kent State Univ 1995

“Fire Within explores what Walt Whitman called the “interior history” of the Civil War – the war waged and witnessed by common people. Through diaries, letters, and newspaper articles, Kerry Trask weaves together personal viewpoints and wartime events to reflect the passions of the times and describes the conflicts encountered by the men who went to war and the people who remained at home.” – Book Jacket

Roster of Wisconsin Volunteers, War of the Rebellion (2 vols)

Wisconsin Adjutant General
Madison: State of Wisconsin 1886

Both volumes are at this link. Use Wisconsin Volunteers; War of the Rebellion 1861-1865 (on this webpage, below) to find the unit in which a veteran served, then use this roster to find his service record.

Wisconsin Volunteers; War of the Rebellion 1861-1865

Wisconsin Adjutant General
Madison: State of Wisconsin 1914

This list gives full name, rank, company and regiment. This is the best place to start when searching for a veteran; then use the regiment to find the individual’s war record in Roster of Wisconsin Volunteers; War of the Rebellion, also on this webpage.

Wisconsin Soldiers and Sailors Reunion Roster

containing the Postoffice Address, Occupation and name of every Wisconsin Soldier and Sailor, now living in any part of the World, and every other Soldier, now in the State, who responded to the Reunion Call. Also the Name of every Wisconsin Soldier who perished in the War

Wisconsin Soldiers Reunion Association
Fond du Lac, WI: Star Steam Job 1880

Organized by regiment.

Wisconsin in World War I

The 32nd Division in the World War 1917-1919

Joint War History Commissions of Michigan and Wisconsin
Wisconsin War History Commission 1920

The 32nd Division was organized in July 1917 from National Guard troops; about 15,000 from Wisconsin and 8,000 from Michigan. Before it left for France, 4,000 National Army troops from Wisconsin and Michigan were transferred to the division. In France and Germany the 32nd Division was under fire for six months, from May to November 1918. It fought on five fronts in three major offensives, and took 14,000 casualties. – Summarized from the “Highlights” section.

War Book of the University of Wisconsin: Papers on the Causes and Issues of the War by Members of the Faculty

University of Wisconsin
Madison: University of Wisconsin 1918

Collected articles that were published in weekly University of Wisconsin “War Pamphlets” during 1917-18, which had been distributed to individuals, public libraries, high schools and county councils of defense. Articles discussed the causes of the war, methods used by Germany in pursuing it, conditions under which the U.S. entered the conflict, and the significance of the war for the world.

Wisconsin in the World War

Pixley, R. B.
Wisconsin War History Company 1919

“An account of the activities of Wisconsin citizens during the great world war, giving in part the record of a loyal state and acknowledging in part its devotion and untiring service to the Nation and to its ideals for a lasting and benevolent democracy.” – Title page

Wisconsin in World War 2

A City at War: Milwaukee Labor during World War II

Pifer, Richard L.
Madison: Wisconsin Historical Society Press 2003

Focuses on the experiences of working men and women in a community that was not a wartime boomtown. Milwaukee was a community of established factories and neighborhoods. A City at War provides readers with a complex view of the home front and the way Americans responded to the most significant war of the twentieth century.

Women Remember the War, 1941-1945

Stevens, Michael E.
Historical Society of Wisconsin 1993

A volume in the Voices of the Wisconsin Past series, which presents episodes in the state’s history in the words of the participants. Drawn from letters, diaries, oral histories, newspapers, and contemporary accounts, these volumes have an immediacy not always found in conventional histories. This volume contains selections from oral history interviews in which women addressed issues concerning their wartime lives. It includes perspectives of women in homes, on farms, and in factories, as well as some who served overseas in the military or with the Red Cross.

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